08 May 2011

Movie Review: 8: The Mormon Proposition

I was stunned to learn that most people did not know the Mormon Church was directly behind the 1998 constitutional amendment in Hawai'i to ban same-sex marriage. I wrote about this subject incidentally here. A number of the documents in this documentary appeared in a webstie called Mormongate. They were fascinating, in part, because while I studied in Hawai'i (and yes, I even campaigned door to door for the NO campaign), I was familiar with all of the puppets and "public faces" of the YES campaign that were secretly being controlled by the Mormon Church. But, I was surprised because at least among the NO campaign workers, it seemed pretty clear that the Mormons were running everything. I guess most don't believe it until they see the signed memos.

It was this part of the documentary that I found most interesting. I've seen lots of same-sex marriage documentaries, some with directors from Hawai'i. It has been quite embarrassingly poor in detail or information. The next most interesting part of the documentary was on how the Mormon's actually ran the 2008 YES campaign on Proposition 8 in California. It was right out of the Hawai'i 1998 playbook, only this time the stakes were higher (Hawai'i population was ~ 1 million; California population was ~ 37 million). In the 2008 campaign in California, the Mormon Prophet, President and head council were open and not (as) secretive as they were in 1998 in Hawai'i. This was also very fascinating.

The rest of it was less interesting unless you don't know anything about Mormon and the dragging in of homeless Utah youth, well, I don't see the narrative relevance unless its to demonize Mormons or make some commentary on Mormonism.

It's definitely worth watching if you like historical documentaries.

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